American Sociological Association

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  1. Agency and Mental Health: A Transition to Adulthood Paradox

    Building on calls within the health literature for a deeper engagement with the concept of agency, we utilize nationally representative survey data from the National Longitudinal Study of Adolescent to Adult Health (N = 13,592) to develop an empirical conception of the traditional treatment of health agency focused on two social psychological constructs that build upon current foci on personal control within the stress process model: (1) "subjective vitality" and (2) a forward-looking orientation ("optimism").

  2. Cancer Diagnosis and Mental Health among Older White Adults: Moderating Role for Social Networks?

    Cancer is a life-changing condition for many American seniors, and a growing body of literature is assessing the mental health implications of living with the disease. This article builds from the well-known buffering hypothesis with insights from recent cancer research to investigate whether social networks moderate the association between cancer and mental health for older men and women.

  3. Flourishing: American Indian Positive Mental Health

    Positive mental health (PMH) is an important construct for understanding the full continuum of mental health. Some socially disadvantaged populations experience a paradoxically high level of PMH despite negative social experiences including discrimination. The purpose of this study is to examine the prevalence and culturally salient correlates of PMH among a cross-sectional sample of 218 American Indian adults living with type 2 diabetes mellitus.

  4. Doing or Undoing Gender? An Explorative Study of Gender, Activities, and Well-being among People with Mental Illness Attending Day Centers in Sweden

    This study explores gender, activity, and well-being among people with mental illness attending day centers in Sweden. Based on survey data of 215 attendees, this study applies the concepts of doing gender and regulatory regimes to analyze the relationship between being involved in gendered activities and well-being. The results show that while both male and female participants are involved in gender-neutral activities, men are less likely to engage in women-dominated (WD) activities while women are more prone to engage in men-dominated (MD) activities.

  5. The Stress Process: An Appreciation of Leonard I. Pearlin

    For more than 60 years, Leonard I. Pearlin’s contributions to theory and research fundamentally shaped the sociology of mental health, medical sociology, and the sociology of aging and the life course. He died last year, and this article is an expression of appreciation for the person and his work as expressed by his colleagues, students, and friends.

  6. The Impact of Armed Conflict in the Country of Origin on Mental Health after Migration to Canada

    This article examines mental health differences among migrants who emigrated from both armed conflict countries and non–conflict countries versus native-born Canadians. We propose that the impact of armed conflict on mental health depends on defining characteristics of the conflict. Our analysis of migrants to Toronto, Canada, suggests that exposure to major intrastate conflicts have long-term impacts on depression among women and anxiety levels among men after migration. We assess the role of different stages and types of stress proliferation in explaining these differences.

  7. The Contingent Value of Embeddedness: Self-affirming Social Environments, Network Density, and Well-being

    Social capital theorists claim that belonging to a densely knit social network creates a shared identity, mutually beneficial exchange, trust, and a sense of belonging in that group. Taken together with the empirical research on the importance of social support and social integration for individuals’ well-being, there is reason to expect that the density of one’s personal social network should be positively related to well-being.

  8. Variation in the Protective Effect of Higher Education against Depression

    Numerous studies document that higher education is associated with a reduced likelihood of depression. The protective effects of higher education, however, are known to vary across population subgroups. This study tests competing theories for who is likely to obtain a greater protective benefit from a college degree against depression through an analysis of data from the National Longitudinal Study of Adolescent to Adult Health and recently developed methods for analyzing heterogeneous treatment effects involving the use of propensity scores.

  9. Where Does Debt Fit in the Stress Process Model?

    This paper contrasts two money-related stressors—debt and economic hardship—and clarifies where debt fits into the stress process model. Debt may be a direct or indirect stressor, as something mediated by psychosocial resources, and may be a potential buffer, interacting with economic hardship. The analyses use data from a two-wave panel study of 1,463 adults. One way debt is distinct from economic hardship is that debt is more common among economically advantaged groups.

  10. The Link between Functional Limitations and Depressive Symptoms: The Explanatory Role of Self-conceptions

    Having more physical limitations predicts greater depressive symptoms. However, relatively few studies examine self-conceptions as potential explanations for this association. Using ordinary least squares regression on panel data collected in Miami-Dade County, Florida (2001 and 2004, N = 1,362), we examine the effect of functional limitations on five dimensions of the self: self-esteem, mastery, mattering, introspection, and emotional reliance.